Paul, I just don't understand this push for more night games. Anyone who has been to a nice warm summer day game and then spent the rest of the day in Wrigleyville, whether he is from Chicago or some far away city, will tell you that this is one of the great experiences in baseball. The day games are almost always sellouts so what does anyone gain from night games? It must be TV money because it sure isn't the fans, business owners, or Wrigley neighbors who would benefit. I have been coming to Chicago every summer for 37 years and NEVER go to a night game. -- Gust Rouhas, Santa Barbara, Calif.
Theo Epstein conceded on opening day it was about money, the first time I’ve heard that in my 25 years of writing about the night game issue: “It really would help from a revenue standpoint with a (new) TV deal,” he said. “Competitively, we’ll adjust to anything. I think the day games can be a competitive advantage for us because we can adjust to it. So it’s more about revenue than it is about competitiveness, but it’d be nice to have the flexibility to do that, certainly.” So there you have it. More night games means more TV revenues. I understand why some people want more day games, and I agree that day games are great. But an entire generation has grown up with night games now and it’s not an issue to the majority of fans.
So many people seem to think that the Rosemont deal is a viable option for the Cubs. I have one thing to say to them: Shea Stadium. Ask Mets fans, anyone who played there or any broadcaster who called a game there what it was like having jets landing or taking off overhead during games. If they did build it, then they would be stuck with it for the next 40 or 50 years, just like the Mets were with Shea. They need a better Plan B. -- Bob J., Chicago
Rosemont is not really a viable Plan B, but the mayor seemed to make a lot of noise about it, so that’s why it became an issue. As someone who has covered many games at Shea Stadium and Citi Field, building a ballpark next to an airport is insane.
Please tell me Crane Kenney is behind the edict of no Double Bubble in the bullpen. I'm assuming the marketing department gets its orders from the esteemed Mr. Kenney. So now the pitchers in the bullpen can worry about hiding their Double Bubble from the cameras, rooftop patrons, and TMZ. Great. Hope the money from Wrigley 5 helps sign Mark Appel. -- R. Seeder
Ultimately business president Crane Kenney is responsible for ordering the bullpen to chew the officially sponsored gum instead of Double Bubble. I’m not sure who gave the directive to the bullpen during the middle of the home opener. That’s just stupid. The bullpen is trying to win a game and the business department is worried about what gum they are chewing? Ridiculous focus. That’s why people always make jokes about the Cubs. OK, that’s one reason.
I've been a fan for more than 40 years, and this might be the worst team I've seen. It's certainly among the worst offensively. Dave Sappelt? Alberto Gonzalez? Brent Lillibridge? Really? This leads to my question: Why not bring up Jackson and Vitters, and let them play. They were the Solers and Almoras of five years ago, and I can't imagine they are going to gain much by toiling another year in AAA. And, really, could they be any worse than the guys I mentioned above? -- Andy Klein
It’s early, so Sappelt and Lillibridge should put up better numbers eventually. I think Jackson will get back up eventually, but he definitely needs to play everyday, and that was not going to happen with the Cubs. Vitters? Not sure if he will be back. He really needs to prove he can play in Triple-A before he gets another chance.
I see you on CSN Sports every now and then. You were on recently with Kap, Jordan and Vaughn McClure. They were in the best professional garb and you looked like a ski bum. Ugly sweater. Come on Paul, dress like you are proud of your company and your position. You are very well aware and knowing about sports but sometimes should we not look as if we are a professional also? GO CUBS. Good luck young man. Oh yeah, get a haircut. -- Woody Almon, Marion Ill.
Thanks for the advice, Woody. I got that haircut, but won’t be back on that show, so I can’t show off the new wardrobe I bought to appease you.
Tell Rizzo to stop trying to pull the outside pitches they are throwing him. If I can see this while riding a spin bike watching the game on my iPhone, the other teams are having no problem with his hole. One other thing: the non-home run hitters should stop swinging for the fences, they are just long fly balls. Line drive, hot grounders, walks, not fly balls! You will laugh at this. Lee Elia was one of my hitting teachers! -- D Sauers
I’ll tell Rizzo next chance I get. I’m sure he’ll be delighted to hear your advice. You’re right about too many guys swinging for the fences. This is not a home run hitting team and they need to adjust their approach in the cold weather.
One of Ald. Tunney’s requests is for the Cubs to provide more parking and better police protection. Regarding the police protection, is this something that all our professional teams are responsible for on game days? Are the Bears, Bulls, Sox, etc. charged by the city for the police officers assigned to cover their games? On a related question, should the rooftop owners be required to chip in for more parking and police protection as well since they are contributing to higher traffic in Wrigleyville, both on foot and in cars? -- Brades K, Chicago
I don’t know the particulars about who pays for what, but the teams are given added police resources, just as a parade or Taste of Chicago or any event involving a lot of people deserves added police. The rooftops add to the congestions, true, but it’s a relatively small percentage of the crowd that comes to Wrigley for the Cubs.
The Cubs have sent me two e-mails in the last week informing me that there (were) “limited seats available to Opening Day.” Going to Cubs.com, I (could) get blocks of 12 tickets together in many sections, what do you think their definition of “limited” means? -- Brian S., Foothill Ranch, Calif.
I think it means if you have a “limited “ attention span we have plenty of seats available for you.
Is it me? There's something about Dale that bugs me? He seems to have favorites (Samardzija, Barney, Sappelt...) and his California indifference act rubs me wrong. He pulled Marmol when his man Samardj's win was in jeopardy, but left Marmol in when none of his buddies started? -- Jeff Sanders, Morris, Ill.
I’m not buying your premise that Sveum will only pull Marmol when his best bro, Samardzija, is pitching. But I do believe he has a bromance with some of his players, including Samardzija and Barney. Nothing wrong with that, as long as he treats everyone equally. Anyway, Marmol is no longer the closer, so you don’t have to worry about it.